Richard’s Gimme-Let: A Literary Libation with a Twist

Like the characters in Shakespeare’s plays, cocktails have unique personalities that can perfectly mirror life’s daily predicaments. 

“Shakespeare Not Stirred” is a literary gem of a cocktail book, brought to us by Caroline Bicks, a guest on Episode 5 of the Cocktails With Friends podcast and professor of 

English at the University of Maine. Her book combines original cocktails and hors d’oeuvre recipes that cleverly connect Shakespearean characters to the 21st century. 

One of our favorite recipes from the book is  “Richard’s Gimme-Let” cocktail, a tribute to Richard III that captures the essence of ambition, much like the character himself. This drink doesn’t just taste good; it transports you to a realm where flavor and history intertwine.

The Ford’s Gin provides a smooth and botanical foundation, complemented by the refreshing notes of basil and zesty lime juice. Combining gin, basil, and lime creates a harmonious blend of herbal, citrusy, and slightly tangy elements. 

But here’s where the magic truly unfolds – the jalapeño garnish. Just as ambition in Shakespeare’s characters comes with a certain fiery intensity, the jalapeño garnish adds a delicate hint of heat to the mix. 

The garnish pays homage to Richard III’s drive and elevates the drink to a new level of invigoration. Here’s the recipe: 

Richard’s Gimme-Let

  • 2 ounces Ford’s Gin
  • 1/2 ounce Basil Simple 
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice 
  • Jalapeño garnish 

Add all ingredients to a shaking tin with ice, shake vigorously for 30 to 40 seconds, then double strain into a coupe glass – garnish with thinly sliced jalapeno, if you dare.

Basil Simple Syrup 

Mix equal parts water & sugar with several basil leaves

Stir over medium heat till fully dissolved, then reduce heat and let simmer for 5 minutes. 

Remove from heat and cool in an ice bath.

This cocktail proves that you can’t judge a book by its cover. It’s an experience and an exploration of flavor that unravels its story sip by sip.

So, next time you find yourself pondering life’s intricacies or seeking solace in the words of your favorite book, consider reaching for Richard’s Gimme-Let, a cocktail that bridges the gap between the centuries. 

To delve deeper into the world of our exquisite cocktails and culinary adventures, we invite you to join us on our Cocktails with Friends podcast, where we share insider tips, secret recipes, and engaging conversations with fellow enthusiasts of fine food and drink.